“A tidy house makes for a tidy mind”.
I get constant comments on Instagram from fellow mummy’s (& some without littles) asking how on earth I keep my home so tidy with two little people, a not so little husband & a pug who do pretty much nothing all day everyday apart from making mess everywhere they go.
Hardwork is the answer. But not as hard as you may think.
Keeping a clean (i’ll blog about that separately as clean is completely different to tidy) & tidy house is a massive thing for me as I can’t relax until everything is ‘in it’s place’. I live by routine & this keeps everything in order as well as ensuring that it’s easy for me to tidy up when Elsa decides to take out every single toy she owns. Believe me, my house gets messy just like anybody else’s, but it takes 5 minutes to go back to it’s normal immaculate state so it doesn’t bother me when it looks like Peppa pig & the cast of Cbeebies have been on a rampage.
Every evening whilst Joe is putting the littles to bed, I go on a crazy 5 minute tidying spree. In that 5 minutes, I literally run around picking things up, putting them away and so on. I also do this a couple of times through the day too, although I don’t tend to put so much away but more move any of Elsa’s toys that have strayed into the lounge area back into the conservatory. I always find that keeping on top of things makes it a lot easier at the end of the day.
By using the below tips, I find it really easy to keep on top of the cleaning side of things too, which I actually don’t do anywhere near as much as you may think, as I don’t have much ‘stuff’ to clean around.
- Anything you don’t use regularly
- Is broken/doesn’t work or not fit for purpose – including those size 8 jeans you haven’t been able to fit into for 5 years & probably never will again
- You find ugly
- You might use one day….maybe, but probably not
2. STORAGE –
Clever storage is absolutely essential for keeping a tidy home.
Storage doesn’t have to be ugly either, just because you have children doesn’t mean that you need a bright yellow unit with lime green plastic drawers (this is the biggest bain of my life – yes i’m sure the bright colours are fabulous for their imagination & all of that, but call me selfish all you want, I’m sure they can go through life without too much mental damage/long-term affects with a more aesthetically pleasing one). You need to find a way to hide the mountains of equally tacky luminous toys which unfortunatly for us mumma’s are unescapable.
Storage solutions are all over the place in my home so here’s a few pictures of where I shove all the ugliness for out of sight/out of mind satisfaction –
A beautiful oversized basket can hide a multitude of sins. By draping a decorative throw over you can hide all those unsightly bits – this houses Elsa’s potty, Rory’s bumbo, a tray & my laptop.
Plus this chest of wicker drawers from the range is perfect for the rest of Elsa’s toys including mountains of disney DVD’s.
We also have the same one out in the hallway which holds things like batteries, gloves/scarfs, Elsa’s shoes, my Annie Sloan paint & brushes etc.
3. ORGANISE –
Everything in our house ‘has a home’ so specific things go in specific places meaning that when something needs to be put away (or found), it becomes automatic to pop it in X drawer or Y cupboard. This makes it SO much easier once you know exactly where everything goes & without even thinking about it can pop it away, in fact, I have not once told Elsa where stuff goes but she automatically puts it away where she finds it (maybe she’s an OCD nutter like me though). See those musical instruments? They all live together in the same drawer. And those Disney DVD’s? Well they live in that drawer! Simple right?
4. ANTI-HOARD –
We have a long running joke in our household that if it’s not nailed down then it’s on Gumtree or Ebay. I am constantly selling stuff from Elsa’s old clothes, to furniture i’ve got bored of, to my husband (but nobody wants him no matter how much I drop the price). Haven’t used the cooking contraption you were bought 4 years ago for your birthday & have no idea what the hell it even is? CHUCK IT. Be absolutely ruthless…if you are umming & arring the likelihood is that you don’t need it so just either sell it, donate it to charity or bin it. Be the complete opposite of a hoarder.
My top tips –
- Start small – you can’t suddenly turn around one day & chuck out half the contents of your house. Well, I mean you could, & i’d be on the sidelines cheering you on BUT it’s not realistic.
- Make a list – I am the queen of list making (you should see my notes on my phone & every notepad in our house). Make a list of everywhere you put ‘stuff’, then go through these & de-clutter. It may be that you only have time for 1 drawer a week, but I can promise you if you follow the above you’ll be well on your way to a much tidier home & clearer mind.
- Give to charity – nothing beats giving to those in need. By sorting out all the stuff you don’t want/need, you are also helping others – it’s a win win situation 🙂
- Be ruthless – don’t keep things ‘just in case’. It’s not worth keeping things because they may possibly come in handy one day, when they haven’t for the past 5 years that they’ve been sat in your cupboard. I always find that if I really need something then I can usually borrow it from family/friends then hand it back without it cluttering up my cupboards.
- Sell your way to happiness – I LOVE selling things. It makes me feel happy that i’ve got rid of something that I no longer have use for & made someone else happy in the process. I can then repurpose that money & buy things a bit more worthwhile, like beautiful home wear, with said money OR put it towards something like a family day out.
- Keep focused – set your mind to something & do it. Procrastination is something we are all guilty of however I always set myself tasks like ‘I can have a cup of tea once i’ve finished sorting this unit’ or ‘no lunch until I list these items on Gumtree’. I affectionately call this state of mind ‘getting shit done’.
- If you see something, do it then & there – when your lovely 2 year old has decided would be a great idea to to pull out the entire contents of a cupboard all over the kitchen floor….don’t just leave it until later! I always find that if something is out of place (beyond the usual stray toys which are absolutely fine) then if I don’t do it then & there, it will just all mount up. Half the time I feel like all I do is tidy up after everyone BUT having a tidy house is really important to me.